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Jacques Cousteau in Rio (1992) 24 Jul 2008

Posted by cat64fish in Land-lubber stories.

A quote from the book “The Human, the Orchid and the Octopus” by JY Cousteau and S Schiefelbein.

“Rio declares war on poverty, but delegates are offering only one prescription to eradicate it: their so-called sustainable development. What they are really suggesting is economic development, and sustainable economic development is a contradiction in terms. The earth cannot “sustain” an increased assault on its nonrenewable resources. [The delegates] are saying to the poor: Do as the rich have done! … If each individual of the earth ‘s expected population … zealously follows that example … it will finish off our planet.”

Cousteau said this after delegates, having just completed the Rio meeting, refused to take a group photograph, unless the luminary joined them. His honest assessment of the Summit and its conclusions ring true in my mind as I re-read that passage for the 10th time. How much more damage can our planet take, before we push it beyond its capacity to recover. Will we even recognise that we have past the point of no return? Or will we continue blithely on, secure in our thinking that nothing we do will affect so severely the only home we have?

A sobering thought, no?



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